1st Edition

Pazyryk Culture Up in the Altai

    174 Pages 110 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    174 Pages 110 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

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    This book reconsiders the archaeology of the Pazyryk, the horse-riding people of the Altai Mountains who lived in the 4th–3rd centuries BCE, in light of recent scientific studies and excavations not only in Russia but also Kazakhstan, Mongolia and China, together with new theories of landscape.

    Excavation of the Pazyryk burials sparked great interest because of their wealth of organic remains, including tattooed bodies and sacrificed horses, together with superb wooden carvings and colorful textiles. In view of this new research, the role of the Pazyryk Culture in the ancient globalized world can now be more focused and refined. In this synthetic study of the region, the Pazyryk Culture is set into the landscape using recent studies on climate, technology, human and animal DNA and local resources. It shows that this was a powerful, semi-sedentary, interdependent group with contacts in Eurasia to their west, and to their east in Mongolia and south in China.

    This book is for archaeologists, anthropologists, art historians, social and economic historians as well as persons with general interests in mobile pastoralism, the emergence of complex societies, the social roles of artifacts and the diverse nature of an interconnected ancient world.

    1. Introduction: The shape of Pazyryk Culture  2. Economic topography in the Pazyryk Culture  3. Social and occupational topography of the Pazyryk Culture: Valedictory use of burials  4. The larger picture: Relationships with Mongolia and China  5. The Pazyryk Culture: Concluding remarks


    Katheryn M. Linduff is University Center for International Studies Professor Emerita in the Departments of Art History and Anthropology at the University of Pittsburgh and currently teaches at Carnegie-Mellon University in the School of Architecture. She has engaged for many years in art-historical research and collaborative fieldwork, focusing on pre- and early history, including the Bronze and Iron Ages, of the Inner Asian Frontier. She has published on metallurgy, gender, China and Eurasia, the archaeology of Inner Asia and on artifacts.

    Karen S. Rubinson is a Research Associate, Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, New York University. She is an art historian and archaeologist specializing in the steppe and Central Asia in the first millennium BCE and early first millennium CE and the South Caucasus in the Bronze Age and Early Iron Ages. One focus of her work is how objects of artistic production, both aesthetically and technologically, can help understand cultural contact and exchange; another is gender questions in the Eurasian Iron Age.